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Laws Rules Policies

Substantive Policy Statements

Arizona Department of Water Resources Laws and Rules

Substantive Policy Statements

Substantive policy statements are advisory only.  A substantive policy statement does not include procedural documents that affect only the internal procedures of the agency.

Also, a substantive policy statement does not impose additional requirements or penalties on regulated parties.  Nor do they include confidential information or rules made in accordance with the Arizona Administrative Procedures Act.


If you believe that a substantive policy statement does impose additional requirements or penalties on regulated parties, you may petition the agency under Arizona Revised Statutes § 41-1033 for a review of the statement.

ADWR Substantive Policy Statements:

  • Assured and Adequate Water Supply:
    • Hydrologic studies demonstrating physical availability of groundwater (AWS7)
  • Arizona Water Protection Fund:
    • Use of alternates and voting by proxy (WP2)
    • Posting of notices and information regarding the meetings and activities of the Commission (WP3)
    • Election of officers (WP5)
    • Noticing the affected public (WP6)
  • Bodies of water:
    • Criteria for consistency with A.R.S. § 45-132(B)(3); bodies of water accessible to the public; Ownership/operation by government entity (LB1)
  • Colorado River:
    • Recommended allocation of Central Arizona Project water (CR1)
    • Use of water in Arizona along the Colorado River (CR2)
    • Reallocation of uncontracted CAP water (CR3)
    • ADWR recommendations on reallocation of non-Indian agricultural CAP water (CR4)
    • State policy on marketing CAP M&I priority water (CR5)
    • Policy regarding transfer of CAP M&I subcontract entitlements (CR6)
    • Policy and procedure for transferring an Entitlement of Colorado River Water (CR8)
  • Licensing time frames:
    • Compliance with administrative completeness review and substantive review time frames (CACR1)
  • Dam safety & flood control:
    • Flood control loan program (DS1)
    • Development of flood control program (DS2)
    • Flood control assistance program (DS3)
    • Alternative flood control assistance (DS4)
    • Handbook for Arizona Communities on Floodplain Management & National Flood Insurance Program (DS5)
      • Appendix A Glossary
      • Appendix B National Flood Insurance Program Regulations (FEMA, 2002)
      • Appendix C Arizona Revised Statutes pertaining to floodplain management and flood control
      • Appendix D Executive Order 77-6 issued by Governor Raul Castro on September 27, 1977
      • Appendix E Chronology of flood events in Arizona, 1862 to 1993
      • Appendix F Model floodplain management ordinance for non-Colorado River communities (ADWR, May 2006)
      • Appendix G Guide for Community Officials: Appeals, Revisions and Amendments to National Flood Insurance Program Maps (FEMA, December 1993)
      • Appendix H FEMA Levee Policy (2/10/81)
      • Appendix I Conditions and criteria for floodway revisions; certification requirements for simple floodway encroachments (FEMA, 1990)
      • Appendix J Answers to questions about substantially damaged buildings (FEMA, March 1991)
      • Appendix K How to use a flood map to determine flood risk for a property (FEMA, May 1995)
      • Appendix L Application/certification forms and instructions for revisions to National Flood Insurance maps (FEMA, January 1999)
      • Appendix M State standards for delineation of floodplains and floodways within riverine environments (ADWR, July 1996)
      • Appendix N Technical bulletins to provide guidance concerning the building performance standards for the National Flood Insurance Program (FEMA)
      • Appendix O Answers to questions about the National Flood Insurance Program (FEMA, November 1997)

  • Groundwater administration:
    • Policy Guidance Memorandum- Irrigation grandfathered groundwater rights (IGFR) based on substantial capital investment (GW2)
    • Policy Guidance Memorandum- Eligibility for IGFRs for land irrigated solely with surface water (GW7)
    • Policy Guidance Memorandum- Private water companies (GW8)
    • Policy Guidance Memorandum- Grandfathered rights for individuals within irrigation districts, cities, towns & private water companies (GW10)
    • Policy Guidance Memorandum- Grandfathered rights for nurseries, greenhouses, landscaped areas, etc. (GW12)
    • Policy Guidance Memorandum- Revised procedures for calculating irrigation acreage (GW16B)
    • Policy concerning development plans under A.R.S. § 45-469 (GW19)
    • Regulatory authority over surface water & groundwater deliveries to a turf-related facility (GW20)
    • Procedures for calculating seasonally adjusted water service area population (GW21)
    • Signatures required for Type I conversions, Type I & IGFR extinguishments, and conveyances (GW22)
    • Policy guidelines for consolidation of IGFR certificates (GW25)
    • Poor quality withdrawal permits for on-site beneficial use (GW26)
    • Interim service area policy (GW28)
    • DWR population survey standards (GW 29)
    • Secondary uses of groundwater withdrawn pursuant to Type 2 rights for mineral extraction and electrical energy generation (GW30)
    • Beneficial use requirement for poor quality withdrawals of <100 AF/A (GW31)
    • Service area extensions (GW32)
    • Termination of poor quality groundwater withdrawal permits (GW33)
    • ADWR interpretation of A.R.S § 45-497(B) (GW34)
    • Conservation plans for new industrial users & interpretation of new turf-related facility definition (GW35)
    • Importation of groundwater from another municipal provider by contract; service area expansions (GW36)
    • Interconnect contracts or agreements between municipal water providers (GW37)
    • Remediated groundwater incentive for conservation requirement accounting for the Second Management Plan (GW38)
    • Thermoplastic casing surface seal variance (GW39)
    • Procedure for establishing new service area rights within active management areas (GW40)
    • Compliance with large municipal provider conservation requirements when there are overlapping service areas of large untreated water providers and large municipal providers (GW42)
    • Interpretation of A.R.S. § 45-454(D)(4) relating to exempt wells (GW43)
    • Bottled Water; Transportation of Groundwater (GW44)
  • Management Plans
    • Guidance Document for Large Municipal Providers Entering the Modified Non-Per Capita Conservation Program (MPI)
  • Recharge:
    • Use of purchased stored water credits to offset GPCD violations (R2)
    • Review procedures for recovery well permit applications (R4)
    • Underground water storage permit application guidance
      • Multiple benefit underground storage facilities (R6)
      • Underground Water Storage Permit Application Guidance (R8)
      • Technical and financial capability; unreasonable harm and hydrologic feasibility (R9)
      • Underground Storage Facility Permit Application Guide (R10)
      • Pilot-Scale Underground Storage Facility Application Process (R11)
  • Surface Water:
    • "A Guide to Filing Applications for Instream Flow Water Rights in Arizona” published December, 1991 has been withdrawn effective August 3, 2012.  Public Notice Acrobat Icon PDFs
  • Tribal government:
    • ADWR tribal government policy (TG1)
  • Water exchange:
    • Summary of 1992 Water Exchange Act (WX1)
  • Well construction:
    • Well permits (WL1)
    • Policy directives for open well capping program (WL3)
    • Granting a verbal authority to drill (WL4)
    • Conversion of exploration/geotechnical wells and/or monitoring/piezometer wells to water production wells (WL5)
    • Drilling a shared well (WL6)
    • Notice of policy regarding variances for geotechnical wells (WL7)
    • AApplication for well driller’s license (WL8)
    • Application for single well driller’s license (WL9)
    • Grace period for registration of monitor wells drilled as part of a CERCLA remedial action on a CERCLA site (WL10)
    • Well abandonment handbook (WL11)
    • Variance requests for notices of intention to drill or abandon wells (WL12)
    • Thermoplastic casing surface seal variance (GW39)